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Microsoft on 'Origami Project'

That video's for real. Sort of.

Microsoft has confirmed its involvement with the 'Origami Project' video currently doing the rounds on the Internet, which shows a handheld tablet-style PC capable of browsing the web, editing photos and playing games.

"While Origami is a concept we’ve been working on with partners, the video you have seen is a year old and represents our initial exploration into this form factor, including possible uses and scenarios," said a Microsoft spokesperson.

"However, we are excited to share more details about the evolution of the Origami concept with you in the coming weeks."

It seems that further details could be forthcoming even sooner than that, however, juding by the Origami Project website - which hints that more will be revealed on March 2nd.

The video shows what looks like a portable tablet PC capable of a wide variety of functions, including gaming - in one scene, a user appears to be playing Halo. It first appeared on the website of film production company Digital Kitchen, which previously produced and advertising campaign for Microsoft-published Xbox title Jade Empire. It can still be seen via CreativeCoreMedia.com.

It seems unlikely, however, that Origami is actually a product which Microsoft will be manufacturing. The firm has been careful to describe it as a "concept" at all times, and to date Microsoft has been careful to stay out of the computer hardware business, with the Xbox consoles being the obvious exceptions to this rule.

What's more probable is that the firm is preparing a concept design, prototype and reference specification for an offshoot of the Tablet PC concept - a form of portable, media-focused system aimed squarely at the home market.

Widespread speculation has also suggested that the video may have been deliberately leaked by Microsoft as part of a viral marketing campaign designed to steal some of the thunder from a major announcement which has been scheduled by rival firm Apple later today.

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